This Day in Black History: June 13, 2005

Michael Jackson was acquitted of 10 counts of child molestation.

Posted: 06/13/2013 08:00 AM EDT

Michael Jackson was exonerated of child molestation, conspiracy and alcohol charges by a California jury on June 13, 2005. The charges would have sent him to prison for nearly 20 years.

The boy who accused Jackson of molestation was shown holding hands with the singer in a documentary, Living With Michael Jackson, which aired in February 2003. Jackson defended his practice of letting boys sleep in his bed and called it “loving.” Authorities searched his Neverland ranch in November 2003 and charges were filed against him in December 2003.

Jackson was indicted by a grand jury in April 2004. The jury deliberated 32 hours in seven days before delivering the verdict of “not guilty.” A large crowd of fans wept and cheered after hearing the news. The singer reportedly wiped his tears after hearing of his acquittal, an emotional response to a nearly two-year ordeal of media scrutiny.   

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 (Photo: Mark Mainz/Getty Images)

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